Most pets will need dental work in their lifetime. Dental health is extremely important for overall health and wellbeing. Have you ever wondered how we prepare for dental surgery in pets?
Because cats and dogs will not tolerate scaling and polishing while they are awake we must have them under a general anesthetic. Since they will be under anesthetic, it is very important that we do a full physical exam to insure they are healthy enough to go under anesthetic for the procedure. We also want to collect a blood sample to analyze the inside of their bodies followed by listening to their heart and lungs prior to surgery. While under anesthetic, the technician will scale the teeth and remove all of the tarter then they will polish the teeth. Polishing helps to buff out any micro-abrasions caused by the scalar and will also help to prevent food and plaque from sticking to the teeth. Once that is completed, the doctor will come in and probe all teeth looking for fractured or any un healthy teeth that may need to be extracted. Sometimes the doctor would like a dental radiograph to visualize what the tooth looks like at the root and determine if in fact a tooth needs to be extracted or not. They will also make sure that the gums are all tight to the teeth and there are no pockets that may collect food and debris that can cause infection. If necessary, they will then remove problem teeth. Once that is complete, we will turn off the gas and leave them on oxygen to wake them up.
Post-op care is very important after a dental cleaning. If teeth were removed then we will recommend feeding soft food for 7- 10 days after surgery. You can soften dry dog food boiling water and letting the kibble sit in that for about 20 min until kibble is soft and it’s cooled down enough to feed to your pet. If there is no teeth that were removed, we recommend brushing their teeth at least once a day and if there were teeth removed, we recommend waiting 10-14 days or till your pet comes in for a dental recheck with one of our technicians.
January 15- March 15th is dental months at the clinic. During this time, we are offering FREE dental exams with one of our technicians. During the exam, we will have a good look at your pet’s teeth and give recommendations on how to care, prevent and learn about dental care in our pets.
Written By: Erin